Medical Design Briefs - February 2024 - 11

of blockchain in healthcare data management
for security and transparency.
" We'll see an expansion of AIenhanced
diagnostic tools like IDx-DR,
which uses deep learning algorithms for
retinal image analysis, " says Lohman.
" Healthcare facilities should focus on
implementing IoT frameworks to leverage
these AI-powered devices effectively,
ensuring data security and HIPAA
(Health Insurance Portability and Accountability
Act) compliance.
" Furthermore, the integration of AI in
continuous patient monitoring (CPM)
devices will aid in proactive health management.
Healthcare organizations
should explore partnerships with technology
providers like Medtronic to harness
the predictive capabilities of these devices
for chronic disease management, " he says.
Blockchain technology, he says, is already
mainstream in sectors like finance
and supply chain management but is now
poised to transform healthcare data management.
" It offers unparalleled security,
transparency, and interoperability in handling
patient data, " says Lohman. " By leveraging
blockchain, healthcare systems can
create immutable, tamper-proof records,
ensuring data integrity and enhancing patient
trust. This technology could streamline
data sharing across providers, payers,
and patients, facilitating better-coordinated
care and improved health outcomes. "
As the world becomes more connected,
intelligent, and automated, the role
of sensors has become increasingly significant
in the healthcare ecosystem.
Marc Schillgalies, senior director of
engineering at TE Connectivity, notes
that new sensor technologies are helping
to lower costs, improve patient outcomes,
and better manage health conditions
by enabling deeper data-driven
decisions for both medical staff as they
treat patients and patients as they aim
to become more informed about their
own health.
" What is changing is the size and availability
of these sensors. Miniaturization
and cost advantages through scale allow
for more sensor content in home care
devices, which in turn moves health services
from the hospital into the patient's
home providing improved patient safety
and comfort. What's more, miniaturization
allows for tiny, lightweight sensors
to fit into smaller medical devices that
are connected to the Internet, often via
mobile applications, " he says.
Medical Design Briefs, February 2024
Another area where miniaturization of
sensors is providing benefits to patients
is minimally invasive procedures, says
Schillgalies. " Sensors used in these procedures
are as thin as a few human hairs.
During the procedure, sensors deliver
feedback to surgeons. For example, force
sensors will tell the surgeon when a cutting
tool is touching human tissue; temperature
sensors can help protect nearby
tissue during laser surgery; and pressure
sensors allow for control of the most sensitive
body parts where managing gases is
an important part of the procedure. "
" We are also seeing improved patient
safety through sensors in medical
pumps, " says Schillgalies. " Pump failure
could have fatal consequences so
advanced sensors are used to measure
force, pressure, position, temperature,
and ultrasonic sensing are crucial. These
sensors are integrated into smart pumps,
which measure liquid levels and continuous
flow, detect occlusion, and alert the
user to air bubbles in lines. The development
of air bubble detectors using
ultrasonic sensing in combination with a
force sensor that continuously monitors
if the tube is in place and the ultra-sonic
sensors ensures that not even tiniest air
bubbles are pumped into the body. This
combination of sensor modalities in one
component saves both space and cost. "
Finally, vital signs monitoring is also
an area in which sensors are having an
impact. Sensors enable the collection
of data in various vital sign monitoring
applications, helping both patients and
doctors to monitor health conditions
- in the hospital and at home. One
innovative technology, says Schillgalies
is piezoelectric film sensors, which are
sensitive enough to measure a patient's
pulse and respiration rate based on physical
contact, eliminating the need for a
nurse to use a blood pressure cuff or
pulse oximetry reading.
Lohman predicts that AI and data
analytics will play a crucial role of in
enabling real-time monitoring, analyzing
behavior, and providing personalized
feedback to patients. The shift
towards AI in real-time health monitoring
is characterized by advanced predictive
analytics.
" Systems
like Philips
HealthSuite
harness AI for comprehensive patient
monitoring, analyzing data points from
wearables and biosensors. Healthcare
providers should integrate these systems
for continuous, data-driven patient care,
especially in managing chronic conditions
like COPD (chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease) and CHF (congestive
heart failure), " says Lohman.
Predictive analytics, powered by AI
and big data, are becoming increasingly
sophisticated and are expected to
play a crucial role in population health
management. These systems can analyze
The impact of AI extends from drug discovery to disease diagnosis, contributing to improved outcomes and
increased accessibility. (Credit: NicoElNino/AdobeStock)
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Medical Design Briefs - February 2024

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Medical Design Briefs - February 2024 - Cover Flap
Medical Design Briefs - February 2024 - Cover Flap1A
Medical Design Briefs - February 2024 - Cover1
Medical Design Briefs - February 2024 - Cover2
Medical Design Briefs - February 2024 - 1
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